Seam construction: The seams on a wetsuit can greatly impact its durability and longevity. Look for wetsuits with glued and blind-stitched seams, which are reinforced with a layer of wetsuit material and are less likely to leak or come apart than flat-lock seams.
Stitching: The stitching on a wetsuit should be tight and even, with no loose threads or fraying. Double-stitching and reinforced stress points can also help improve the durability of a wetsuit.
Zipper quality: The zipper on a wetsuit should be durable and corrosion-resistant, with a smooth, easy-to-use design. Look for wetsuits with high-quality zippers and reinforced zipper flaps to prevent water from entering through the zipper.
Fit and comfort: A well-fitting wetsuit that is comfortable to wear can greatly impact its durability and overall performance. Look for wetsuits that fit snugly but not too tight, with no gaps or sagging material. Wetsuits with ergonomic panel designs and features such as seamless underarms can also improve comfort and durability. Wetsuits with flush panels also allow any water that manages to enter the suit to be released near the ankles to avoid uncomfortable pooling.
Material: Wetsuits made from limestone are more durable than neoprene but also very expensive and the limestone must be mined. Wetsuits made from Ecofoam are particularly durable, comfortable and have the additional virtue of being eco-friendly to the max.